RAYS

Spring training

Rays: Cobb tweaks Hellickson, says he's 'slacking'

Calling out Helly

RHP Alex Cobb gave good buddy points to LHP David Price, who came to watch the first two innings of his Monday morning simulated game against minor-leaguers. Cobb noted that LHP Matt Moore had an excuse as he was moving into his Tampa apartment, and that RHP Chris Archer came out for his previous minor-league outing. Among the core group of starters, that left RHP Jeremy Hellickson unaccounted for. "The only one slacking a little bit is Helly," Cobb said. "He had no excuse, he should have been here."

All checked out

Manager Joe Maddon was planning a less eventful off day than last spring, when he had his first colonoscopy. That exam revealed a few polyps, but Maddon said Sunday he had a follow-up before camp this year that was good and is now clear for five years. Also, he did a PSA for colorectal cancer awareness that will start airing soon.

Helping hand

The Rays took a little off the top (and sides and back) to raise funds and awareness for the Pediatric Cancer Foundation on Sunday, as 29 players and coaches, and 70 staffers overall from principal owner Stuart Sternberg down, had their heads shaved, their third straight year participating in the Cut for a Cure program. Manager Joe Maddon said having Ava, a 5-year-old patient, help with the shaving made it even more poignant: "You're a dad, you have kids, and you're a grandparent, so it really smacks you. … So any little thing we can do as an organization to help, we're very happy to be able to do so." The Rays are selling the Fortune Favors the Bald T-shirts for $15.99 at team stores and by phone (813-228-7157, ext. 0) with proceeds to PCF. To donate, see pcfcutforacure.org.

Quote of the day

"I only left about 2 percent maybe."

Principal owner Stuart Sternberg, on getting his head just about shaved.

Who is this Ray?

Florida native who lived in Japan and New Mexico growing up. Plays baseball left-handed and golfs right-handed. Was eighth-round draft pick by Rays.

The dish Rays at Twins

When/where: 7:05 tonight; Hammond Stadium, 14100 Six Mile Cypress Parkway, Fort Myers

Radio: 620-AM

Tickets: $16-40, available via twinsbaseball.com, toll-free 1-800-338-9467

Pitchers: Rays — LH Matt Moore, Brandon Gomes, Brad Boxberger; Twins — RH Phil Hughes, relievers TBA

Rays information: Toll-free 1-888-326-7297 (FAN-RAYS)

Heads up

LHP Matt Moore starts tonight "trying to build off of last time" when he made some progress with his challenging mechanics.

On deck

Wednesday: at Orioles, 1:05. Rays — RH Mark Lowe; Orioles — TBA

Thursday: Twins, 7:05. Rays — TBA; Twins — TBA

Friday: Blue Jays, 1:05. Rays — LH David Price; Jays — TBA

Exhibition sked

All games 1:05 unless noted

March

22 Orioles

23 at Red Sox

24 at Twins

25 Red Sox

26 Orioles 7:05

27 at Orioles, 7:05

28 at Tigers

29 at AA Montgomery (Ala.), 3:05

Who is this Ray: LH Matt Moore

Spring in photos

Going to a spring training game in Florida? We want to see your photos. Post them on our Facebook wall at Tampa Bay Times Sports or tag them #springtrainingFL on Twitter and/or Instagram and we'll add them to our online gallery.

Follow our coverage all spring on The Heater blog (tampabay.com/blogs/rays) and on Twitter @TBTimes_Rays.

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Rays: Cobb tweaks Hellickson, says he's 'slacking' 03/18/14 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 18, 2014 1:04pm]

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